The Current State of Knowledge of Shea Butter Tree (Vitellaria paradoxa C.F.Gaertner.) for Nutritional Value and Tree Improvement in West and Central Africa

Patrick Bustrel Choungo Nguekeng, Prasad Hendre, Zacharie Tchoundjeu, Marie Kalousová, Armelle Verdiane Tchanou Tchapda, Dennis Kyereh, Eliot Masters, Bohdan Lojka
2021 Forests  
Vitellaria paradoxa (C.F.Gaertn.) is a multi-purpose tree species distributed in a narrow band across sub-Saharan Africa. The species is integrated into cropping and agroforestry systems as a nutritional and economic resource, which provides a range of environmental services. Integration of the species into land-use systems provides an essential source of livelihoods and income for local populations. The economic potential of the shea butter tree derives from its edible products, which also
more » ... e cosmetic and pharmaceutical applications. To understand the current state of knowledge about V. paradoxa, this paper summarizes information about the ecology, population structure, and genetic diversity of the species, also considering compositional variation in the pulp and kernels, management practices, and efforts towards its domestication. Despite the great potential of the shea butter tree, there are some gaps in the understanding of the genetics of the species. This review presents up-to-date information related to the species for further domestication and breeding purposes.
doi:10.3390/f12121740 fatcat:4d73uhomlnaa3gizonuu4v4fmy